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Water Bailiffs Get Police Training To Tackle Wildlife Crime

17th February 2009

The first in a series of training days for warranted Water Bailiffs across Caithness, Sutherland & Easter Ross took place at Achfary, on the Reay Forest Estate last week for bailiffs from the North & West District Salmon Board.

The training days are part of an ongoing Police initiative to tackle Wildlife Crime in the Far North by the Police working in partnership with gamekeepers, water bailiffs, countryside rangers, conservationists and other organisations involved in countryside.

With the current economic downturn, crimes of poaching across the UK are expected to increase according to the National Wildlife Crime Unit based in North Berwick.

The training day was delivered by local Police wildlife crime officers and covered areas such as search of vehicles, seizure of nets/tackle and dealing with offenders as warranted Water Bailiffs have these powers under the Salmon & Freshwater Fisheries Scotland Act 2003. Constable Cailean Macleod, Wildlife Crime Officer for Caithness commented:

"The training day was a blend of hands on practical exercises to develop and refine skills such as dealing with suspected poachers, searching vehicles and seizing evidence along with the necessary theory to work safely and effectively."

The area commander for Caithness, Sutherland and Easter Ross, Chief Inspector Andy Brown commented: "This is part of our ongoing initiative with our partners in the countryside, which not only, enhances their skills, but also assists in preventing and detecting crime in our community. We are committed to this effective partnership working and look to delivering joint training throughout the Caithness, Sutherland & Easter Ross Command Area."

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